Scribble City Central's Predictions for the Writing Year.Some of them may be mildly eccentric--but then you wouldn't expect anything else, would you? Here goes...
Writing and Politics:
Not a very hard prediction, this. There will be increasing anger about library cuts, and there will be much writing by writers to MPs, councils, newspapers and on blogs. On Feb 5th we will be sitting-in in various libraries around the country, and I forecast that many of us will march through the streets. PLR will be cut again in the next budget, and reading and literacy programmes will be quietly axed with politicians hoping we won't notice. We will though, won't we?
Writing and Social Media:
I've said it before and I'll say it again. I predict that social media will become increasingly important to the writing community as a whole, and writers who don't engage with it will be left behind. Publishers' publicity departments will have their publicity budgets slashed as never before, so it will be up to authors to find ever more creative ways of getting their books out to the reading public. I'm absolutely sure that authors on YouTube will be the Next Big Thing--look out for a rash of discussions on where to get a cheap but good video camera on author blogs!
Writing and Technology:
Keep up! This will be the year when e-books rock the public perception of reading even more than they have done already, and it's an easy prediction to say that publishers will be putting more money behind this than anything else--to the detriment of paper books. The Kindle will be everywhere, and if the next generation iPad doesn't have a better version of e-ink than the Kindle now does, I'll be very surprised. I also predict that the first proper versions of Smart Paper will be on the market before then end of the year. NB: On the Smart Paper front--Samsung have just unveiled a prototype touch sensitive screen at around 0.03mm thick at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas (Source: Daily Telegraph 07/01/11)...it's definitely coming!
Writing and Publisher Deals:
Of course, there will be a huge new 'debut novel of the year' for someone, and deals will still be being done at the London Book Fair, and at Bologna and Frankfurt. But I am not predicting a great year for writers in general, even if they are already established. All bets are going to be off as far as huge advances are concerned--especially for children's and YA books. It'll be harder than ever to get published this year, and harder still to get an agent. Sorry if this is depressing, but it's what seems to be floating around in the aether of prediction. This is the one I'd REALLY like to be wrong about.
I'm writing a series for younger readers and a YA novel. Who knows what will happen? Certainly not me, and I'm not going to make any predictions about my own 2011 future for fear of jinxes! But what I can tell you is that I will be writing my socks off, being super-critical of and ruthless about my own work before it goes anywhere and keeping my fingers and toes crossed that I'll beat my own gloomy forecast (see above). This blog will shortly be getting a major redesign, so look out for that, as well as the forthcoming reviews for the 2011 British Books Challenge. I'll carry on with my mad tweeting and hope to reach 1000 Twitter followers before the end of February. I will also be one of those authors on YouTube--watch this space for news. And my final prediction is that I'll be grateful, as always, for the support I receive throughout the year from all of you, and from my lovely bookish and authory friends around the world. I couldn't do it without you, so thanks in advance!
Have a wonderful start to 2011 and let me know what YOUR predictions are!